You are Not Welcome: Social Exchanges between Female Spider Monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi)
- 359 Downloads
Group living leads to competition for food between group members. Two types of intragroup food competition may occur: scramble competition, in which all group members use the same resource, such that feeding opportunities are equal for everyone; and contest competition, in which some group members monopolize resources through aggression and dominance. In species in which females disperse from the natal group and immigrate into other groups, immigrant females increase group size and thus possibly food competition. Under these circumstances, other females may use aggression to discourage new females from joining the group. We assessed the distribution of aggression, embraces, and kisses among female spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) in relation to group tenure. We recorded social interactions during 1688 10-min focal animal samples on 11 females in Santa Rosa, Costa Rica. We found that aggression was rare between long-term resident females and aggression rates were not higher during feeding than in other contexts, suggesting there was little contest competition. Long-term residents and less recently immigrant females showed higher aggression rates toward the most recent immigrants than toward other females, especially during the first months after a female immigrated, which coincided with the dry season. We did not find similar patterns for embrace and kiss. These results suggest that other females target aggression toward the most recent immigrants to reduce scramble competition. This finding suggests that group tenure should be included in socioecological models for species with female dispersal.
KeywordsAggression Female dispersal Fission–fusion Food competition Tenure
We thank the Guanacaste Conservation Area, Santa Rosa sector, for facilitating our research at the site. Thanks to Elvin Murillo Chacon for the support in the field. We are grateful to two anonymous reviewers and the editor for their comments on an early version of the article. This study was supported by a scholarship obtained by J. C. Riveros from the Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología, México (CONACYT). The long-term project has been supported by Chester Zoo, the National Geographic Society, the Leakey Foundation, and CONACYT.
- Amici, F., Call, J., & Aureli, F. (2009). Variation in withholding of information in three monkey species. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 276, 3311–3318.Google Scholar
- Aureli, F., Schaffner, C. M., Boesch, C., Bearder, S. K., Call, J., et al (2008). Fission–fusion dynamics: New research frameworks. Current Anthropology, 49, 627–654.Google Scholar
- Bates, D., Maechler, M., Bolker, B., & Walker, S. (2015). Fitting linear mixed-effects models using lme4. Journal of Statistical Software. doi: 10.18637/jss.v067.i01.
- Furuichi, T., Yamagiwa, J., & Aureli, F. (Eds.) (2015). Dispersing primate females: Life history and social strategies in male-philopatric species. Berlin: Springer.Google Scholar
- Janzen, D. H. (1986). Guanacaste national park: Ecological and cultural restoration. San José: La Universidad Estatal a Distancia.Google Scholar
- Koenig, A., Scarry, C. J., Wheeler, B. C., & Borries, C. (2013). Variation in grouping patterns, mating systems and social structure: What socio-ecological models attempt to explain. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, B: Biological Sciences, 368, 20120348.CrossRefPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Kummer, H. (1971). Primate societies: Group techniques of ecological adaptation. Arlington Heights: AHM Publishing.Google Scholar
- Palombit, R. A. (2000). Male-female social relationships and infanticide in animals. In C. P. van Schaik & C. H. Janson (Eds.), Male infanticide and its implications (pp. 240–268). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
- Pusey, A. E., & Schroepfer-Walker, K. (2013). Female competition in chimpanzees. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, B: Biological Sciences. doi: 10.1098/rstb.2013.0077.
- Pusey, A., Williams, J., & Goodall, J. (1997). The influence of dominance rank on the reproductive success of female chimpanzees. Science. doi: 10.1126/science.277.5327.828.
- R Core Team (2015). R: A language and environment for statistical computing. R Foundation for statistical computing, Vienna, Austria.Google Scholar
- Rimbach, R., Link, A., Montes-Rojas, A., Di Fiore, A., Heistermann, M., & Heymann, E. W. (2014). Behavioral and physiological responses to fruit availability of spider monkeys ranging in a small forest fragment. American Journal of Primatology, 76, 1049–1061.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Santorelli, C. J., Schaffner, C. M., Campbell, C. J., Notman, H., Pavelka, M. S., et al (2011). Traditions in spider monkeys are biased towards the social domain. PloS One. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0016863.
- Schaffner, C. M., Rebecchini, L., Ramos-Fernandez, G., Vick, L. G., & Aureli, F. (2012). Spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi yucatanensis) cope with the negative consequences of hurricanes through changes in diet, activity budget, and fission–fusion dynamics. International Journal of Primatology, 33, 922–936.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- van Schaik, C. P. (1989). The ecology of social relationships amongst female primates. In V. Standen & R. A. Foley (Eds.), Comparative socioecology: The behavioural ecology of humans and other mammals (pp. 195–218). Boston: Blackwell.Google Scholar
- Townsend, S. W., Slocombe, K. E., Emery Thompson, M., & Zuberbuhler, K. (2007). Female-led infanticide in wild chimpanzees. Current Biology. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2007.03.020.